Becoming a Web Developer Can Change Your Life

At 23 years old I was working as a cook at a seafood restaurant and making $9 an hour. I had no college degree and no experience working with technology.

I taught myself web development using free internet resources and built a new career for myself.

By age 26 I was making $38 an hour as a web developer at a major media company.

By age 30 I was working from home full-time as a web application architect.

I am not presenting this story to brag. This story, and this site, is about showing you how you can build a career as a web developer and drastically change your life and career.

Since I started my web development career I have been able to purchase a home, earn my Bachelors and Masters degrees, and travel extensively. All of those experiences were because of my choice to build a career as a web developer.

I sincerely believe the career path I chose can work for many other people, and I hope this site helps them achieve their goals.

Robert Stowe, M.Ed.
linkedin.com/in/rstowe

What is a Web Developer & What Does a Web Developer Do?

A web developer is a software programmer who is focused on developing sites and applications for the World Wide Web.

Simply put, a web developer writes the code which is used by computers to display webpages.

Here are some everyday tasks for a web developer:

  • Work with a web designer to create new webpage designs.
  • Discuss the layout and structure of a website with the website manager.
  • Write the code to produce a new page layout for a website.
  • Create a database for a new web based application.

The role of web developer is very flexible, and that flexibility is what makes it a good career choice for a large number of people.

The Benefits of Being a Web Developer

Being a web developer offers benefits most careers cannot.

  • You do not need a college education to be a web developer.
    • Companies will hire you based on your portfolio of sites. Develop A Job is designed to help you build your portfolio and get into your new career field quickly.
  • Pay is based on the knowledge you have, not your education level.
  • Everything you need to learn is available online, free of charge.
  • Many web development jobs allow you to work from anywhere there is an internet connection, even your own home.
  • Because every company and organization needs a website you can work at a variety of places. You can find corporate jobs, non-profit jobs, full-time hours, part-time hours, and even freelance jobs where you work for yourself at your own pace.
  • The position of web developer is in very high demand and the demand continues to grow.
  • A career as a web developer offers stability and long term career viability.
    • The web is probably not going away in your lifetime, and society will always need people to work on it.

Active Web Developer Job Openings

Developer - Medina, WA

…hiring front-end engineers. Want to work for a company you love? Are you a Developer ? You will be responsible for managing the interchange of data between the

PHP Developer - Nonantum, MA

…access to thousands of companies currently hiring PHP developers. Are you a PHP Developer ? You will be responsible for working with cross- functional teams to

Mobile Developer - Mountlake Terrace, WA

…get access to thousands of companies currently hiring mobile developers. Are you a Mobile Developer ? Would you like to build apps for a range of iOS devices

Open-Source Web Developer - TS/SCI with FSP Required - Annapolis Junction, MD

…Security Clearance (TS/SCI with FSP) Required Job Description: Exciting opportunity for a top-notch web developer who is eager to work on a modern, open-source

Front-End Web Developer - Rockville, MD

…Maryland, near Washington, DC. Job Summary: Westat is seeking an entry level front end web developer with strong web design and user interface development

IT Project Manager - Half Moon Bay, CA

…travel might also be required. Jobs related to IT Project Management include software developer , business analyst, web designer and IT support analyst. A career

Drupal 8 Developer - Reston, VA

…optimization, creative and development solutions. We are looking for a Drupal 8 Developer experience to work within our Reston office. If you enjoy coding, sharing

Software/ Web Developer II - Arlington, VA

Job ID: 18-00257 AboutWeb is seeking a Software/ Web Developer Level 2 for our end client in the DC Metro area. Clearance Requirement: Active TS/SCI security

Front End Web Developer - Reston, VA

POSITION: Front End Web Developer LOCATION: Reston, VA DEPARTMENT: JIDO CLEARANCE: Active TOP SECRET with Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) access Role

Front End Developer - Reston, VA

…creative and development solutions. Jellyfish is looking for a talented Front End Developer to work within our Reston, VA Office. If you enjoy design, coding,

SharePoint Administrator ( Web Software Developer ) - Alexandria, VA

PSI Title: SharePoint Administrator ( Web Software Developer ) Work Location: VA-Alexandria Description Essential Functions and Job Responsibilities: The

Mid-Level Web Developer - Tempe, AZ

…in a client-facing, on-site capacity. Required Technical Knowledge & Experience: Web technologies including Angular, Knockout, Bootstrap, JQuery, CSS, and HTML5

Web Developer - Sioux Falls, SD

…" Apply Now Start apply with LinkedIn Apply Now Start Please wait Web Developer COMPANY: Aerostar Technical Solutions LOCATION:Sioux Falls, SD, US,

Software Developer , Junior - Mclean, VA

Job Description Job Number: R0017418Software Developer , JuniorKey Role:Conduct systems analysis and programming activities related to the development, maintenance,

.Net Developer - Washington, DC

Summary The MIL Corporation seeks a .Net Developer working directly with a development team supporting our customer's application. This individual will support

Web Developer (Duluth) - Columbia, NJ

…and an associates' degree is equivalent to 2 years of experience. Work history as a web developer must be in programs and contracts of similar scope, type, and

Front End / Web Developer Specialist - Edina, MN - Boston, MA

…the future by providing the last lending solution they will ever need. The Web Developer Specialist, in collaboration with project team members, develops and

The Different Types of Web Developers

There are two components which deliver a website.

  1. The web server which holds the site information
  2. The browser program used to view the site (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, etc.).

Every web developer has an understanding about both components, but many developers choose to focus on one of those components for their career. Since you are just starting as a web developer it would be good for you to learn a bit about both, then choose your area to focus on.

Web Development on the Server

Web developers who work on code on servers write the code which constructs the website. Their code pulls data and files from the server and combines them to produce the website.

Their code tells the server what to do when you send data to the server. Such as when you submit a form or send an email.

Web developers who work on server based code are often referred to as Back-end Developers.

Web Development for the Browser

Web developers who work on code on for the web browser write code which tells the browser where to lay out the pieces of a webpage. Their code tells the browser where to put text, images, and media (video, slideshows, etc.) on a given webpage.

Web developers who work on browser based code are often refereed to as Front-end Developers.

Where do Web Developers Work?

One of the great benefits of being a web developer is the flexibility of where you can work. This is just a small list of the different job types available to web developers.

  • On a product team at an advertising agency
  • In the IT Department of a major corporation
  • As member of a development team at a software development firm
  • As a freelance web developer and work on your own projects
  • Being the sole web developer at a small or medium sized company

How Long Does it Take to Become a Web Developer?

You will need two things to get your first job as a web developer:

Once you are able to produce a handful of sites and earn one or two certifications, you will have a strong enough resume to go job hunting.

Most people are capable of achieving those two goals with 6 months of part-time work and learning.

Develop a Job is a great tool for guiding your journey to a new career, but it is only one guide. We want you to succeed as web developer, so please use any resources which might help you become a web developer.

The Start Here: Web Development Podcast is another great resource for learning to be a web developer.

The Server, the Database, and the Browser

Those three components make up the basis of any website.

The server holds the files which are used to produce the website. These files include HTML files, images, videos, and the code files used to create the site’s layout.

A server is also referred to as a web server or the back-end.

Resources for learning more about web servers:

The database holds the data used in a website. The data in a database is stored in multiple tables that look similar to a spreadsheet. Each distinct database table holds data specific to a topic, function, or user.

The server adds data to the database tables and copies data from the tables. The server is the connection between the stored data and the web browser.

For example, when you log into Facebook the Facebook server copies all of the data needed for your profile from the database and sends it to your browser in a format which the browser can read .

The database is also referred to as the DB, or the data table.

Resources for learning more about databases:

The browser is the program you use on your computer to interact with the internet. There are a few different browser programs currently used: Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, and Safari are some of the most popular.

You tell the browser which website or webpage location you want to visit and the browser retrieves the code and data from the server for that website. The browser then shows the data in the correct layout to you.

The browser is also referred to as the client or the front-end.

You interact with the browser using these program languages:

Websites, Webpages, and Web Applications

A webpage is a single page shown in a web browser. A single video page on YouTube.com is a webpage.

A website is a collection of webpages under a single URL (Uniform Resource Locator). Youtube (youtube.com) is a website.

A web application is a website which offers advanced functionality like a computer program would. An example of a web application would be a web based calendar, or web based email. Youtube.com is also a web application

What is a Web Host?

A web host is the computer which holds the web server and database.

Setting up and maintaining a reliable host computer is expensive and difficult.

Most people and companies pay a hosting company a monthly rate to use one of their computers as a web host.

In the section Build Your First Website we will point you to a low cost web host you can use to setup your first website.

Resources for learning more about web hosts and web hosting: